Re: Let the listener guess what happened
|From:||Tim May <butsuri@...>|
|Date:||Wednesday, December 29, 2004, 0:51|
John Cowan wrote at 2004-12-28 17:24:50 (-0500)
> Gary Shannon scripsit:
> > I ran across some notes from several years ago about an idea for
> > a language where the participants in the drama are enumerated,
> > but the actual action is left for the reader/listener to infer.
> > For example:
> > John the thrower; Fred the catcher; and the ball.
> > "John threw the ball to Fred" does not specify whether Fred
> > succeeded in catching the ball or not. However the construction
> > "John the thrower; Fred the catcher; and the ball." sort of
> > implies that Fred actually caught the ball.
> Tom O'Breton's AllNoun works like this. There are a lot of broken
> links to it, but http://www.panix.com/~tehom/allnoun/allnoun.htm
> seems to be current.
It also reminds me of Paonese, from Jack Vance's _The Languages of
| The Panarch, making the statement, 'There are two matters I wish to
| discuss with you,' used words which, accurately rendered, would
| read: '_Statement-of-importance_ (a single word in Paonese) - _in a
| state of readiness_ - two; ear - of Mercantil - _in a state of
| readiness_; mouth - of this person here - _in a state of
| volition_.' The italicized words represent suffixes of condition.
| The necessary paraphrasing makes the way of speaking seem
| cumbersome. But the Paonese sentence, '_Rhomel-en-shrai
| bogal-Mercantil-nli-en mous-es-nli-ro_' requires only three more
| phonemes than, 'There are two matters I wish to discuss with you.'
| 'You have not grasped the essential point,' said Palafox. 'Paonese
| is a passive, dispassionate language. It presents the world in two
| dimensions, without tension or contrast. A people speaking
| Paonese, theoretically, ought to be docile, passive, without strong
| personality development - in fact, exactly as the Paonese people
| are.' ... 'To illustrate, consider the sentence, "The farmer chops
| down a tree".' (Literally rendered from the Paonese in which the
| two men spoke, the sentence was: 'Farmer _in state of exertion_;
| axe _agency_ ; tree _in state of subjection to attack_.') ...